Not A Pink Girl

40 years ago today, I held my breath… | July 16, 2009

My father worked on all the Apollo missions & he was a nervous wreck for weeks before a launch. But on July 16, 1969, us kids literally tiptoed around our house & uttered not a word. One false move & we’d have had hell to pay. Why? Because Apollo 11 launched the first men to walk on the moon.

All this week I’ll be looking back at those days when, as a little kid who grew up with an unusually close connection to space travel, I tried to get my young brain around the enormity of NASA’s space program. Oh, & also reminiscing about all the great junk food snacks we wolfed down lying on the avocado-green sculpted carpet in our living room in front of the TV as we watched the fuzzy images of the big payoff of my dad’s day job.

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About the photo: The American flag heralded the launch of Apollo 11, the first Lunar landing mission, on July 16, 1969. The massive Saturn V rocket lifted off from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center with astronauts Neil A. Armstrong, Michael Collins, and Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin at 9:32 a.m. EDT. Four days later, on July 20, Armstrong and Aldrin landed on the Moon’s surface while Collins orbited overhead in the Command Module. Armstrong and Aldrin gathered samples of lunar material and deployed scientific experiments that transmitted data about the lunar environment.

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